22nd November 2010

The Good Neighbour

The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us…”
John 1:14 (NIV)

This is very “religious” sounding. I never really got the full impact of what it meant until I read it in The Message translation: “The Word became flesh and blood, and moved into the neighbourhood…”

Jesus became a human being, (while still remaining fully God), and came to live with us, just like one of our neighbours. In effect, he shares the same things that affect our ordinary lives. We don’t think of Jesus being bothered by noisy neighbours, or potholes in the road, or difficulties at work. Perhaps we think that his only concern is with empty pews in churches, or the anti-Christian press. He is concerned about these, but he’s also concerned about all of our lives. We must never think that our problems are too mundane or trivial for Jesus.

Not everyone goes through great spiritual trials all the time. Most of us don’t suffer severe health problems continually, or live in extreme poverty. As Henry David Thoreau said, “The mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation”. Jesus lived a human life and knows what it is like. He doesn’t want us to live in ”quiet desperation”, but in the abundant life he promised.

God isn’t a distant being, far above us in highest heaven. He is beside us, always ready to help. Jesus is God in human flesh and he lives right in the neighbourhood. Don’t hesitate to take your troubles to him because he said that he will take our burdens and give us rest. Matthew 11:28 says, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”

Remember that Jesus is the friend who lives with you, the good neighbour who is always ready to give a hand. Be neighbourly. Call on him.

Almighty God, Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, we thank you that you sent Jesus into the world to lead a life like ours so that he experienced all that we experience. Thank you that he is our neighbour and friend, as well as our Saviour and King. We thank you and pray in Jesus’ name

Study by Jim Robertson 

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